Three portraits of former Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin are on display in the centre of Donetsk, the rebel capital of eastern Ukraine, as the separatist authorities fuel a mood of Soviet nostalgia.

The portraits, adorning a main square, seem to go down well with one young woman walking past.

“I think the portraits of Stalin are a good thing. It’s our history and a lot of people have forgotten he even existed,” said Yekaterina, a 22-year-old student.

The previously taboo display comes as the rebels revive Soviet customs to cement their Moscow-backed rule – while glossing over Stalin’s atrocities.

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